When Apple released the iPhone 5 and had it preloaded with their latest operating system iOS 6 many owners were surprised to find that the native Google Maps app they had become accustomed to on all previous versions of the iPhone was gone. In its place was a new, custom developed maps app by Apple . Initial reviews of Apple’s native Map app were not stellar, causing Apple’s CEO Tim Cook to send out a letter to costumers stating that the company would do better. He even pointed customers to other mapping apps available in the App Store.
When Tim Cook sent out his letter to customers there was one key map app that most users wanted back on there phone, Google Maps. But at that time, Google didn’t have a maps app approved by Apple and readily available. All that changed today as Google Maps has been approved by Apple and is ready for users to download via the App store.
Add Google Maps To Your iPhone 5
If you’d like to add Google Maps to your iPhone 5 the process is now just like installing any other app.
- Open the App Store app on your iPhone 5
- Search for the “Google Maps” app. You should see the app as a top result
- When the app has finished downloading and installed on your phone, select the “Open” button to start using Google Maps on your iPhone. The App will also be available to you like all other apps on your iPhone springboard
Initial Impressions of Google Maps
I haven’t had too much time yet to test out Google’s new Map app. One thing should be clear is that it is not the same Map app that was available on the iPhone 4s and with previous versions of iOS. This is a new, from the ground up Maps app that uses Google’s Mapping technology. Some of the new features include:
- Voice Guided Turn by Turn Navigation
- A New Interface
- Street View
The feature that has me the most excited is the Street View. I believe this is one of Google’s best mapping features and I use it often through the browser based app on my Macbook Air. However, I’ll be honest in that I’m not too impressed with the voice guided turn by turn navigation system. The directions seem accurate, but the voice is choppy and feels too much like a computer. This stands out since Apple’s map has a smooth sounding Siri based turn by turn navigation mapping system.
Overall, the Google Map app is still probably one of the best mapping apps available on the iPhone. Their mapping technology is just that much better than the competition and has years worth of data as an advantage. I’ll try using it in place of Apple’s mapping software for a few weeks to see which one really wins me over.
What about you? Have you been happy with Apple’s Mapping application for the iPhone 5? Are you excited and ready to get Google Maps on your phone?